Classic Literature | 29 July 2015Get to Know Your Greek & Roman Mythology Share article facebook twitter google pinterest Ancient Greek and Roman mythology is filled with exciting tales of passion and power, as well as warnings about human nature. Many of us have heard bits and pieces of mythological tales in school, but the in-depth study of mythology can be exciting as well as educational. E.M. Beren’s Mythology: Who’s Who in Greek and Roman Mythology provides a comprehensive and entertaining look at these somewhat mysterious deities worshipped by ancient civilizations. Before delving into the deities themselves, mythology students needs some basic background. Photo Courtesy of Wellfleet Press Here are eight fun facts about mythological gods: In appearance, the gods were supposed to resemble mortals, whom, however, they far surpassed in beauty, grandeur, and strength, and stature. They resembled human beings in their feelings and habits, intermarrying and having children, and requiring daily nourishment to replenish their strength and refreshing sleep to restore their energies. Their blood, a bright ethereal fluid called ichor, never engendered disease, and, when shed, had the power of producing new life. The Greeks believed that the mental qualifications of their gods were of a much higher order than those of men, but nevertheless, they were not considered to be exempt from human passions, and we frequently behold them actuated by revenge, deceit, and jealousy. They, however, always punish the evil-doer, and visit with dire calamities any impious mortal who dares to neglect their worship or despise their rites. Photo Courtesy of Wellfleet Press Although there were so many points of resemblance between gods and men, there remained the one great distinction: the gods enjoyed immortality. Still, they were not invulnerable, and we often hear of them having been wounded, and suffering in consequence such exquisite torture that they have earnestly prayed to be deprived of their privilege of immortality. The gods knew no limitation of time or space, being able to transport themselves to incredible distances with the speed of thought. They possessed the power of rendering themselves invisible at will, and could assume the forms of men or animals as it suited their convenience. They could also transform human beings into trees, stones, animals, and other objects, either as a punishment for their misdeeds or as a means of protecting the individual, thus transformed, from impending danger. Each deity possessed a beautiful chariot, which, drawn by horses or other animals of celestial breed, conveyed them rapidly over land and sea according to their pleasure. Buy from an Online Retailer In North America: Explore classic stories of the great Greek and Roman heroes, gods, and monsters. Who’s Who in Classical Mythology is an indispensable guide to all the Greek and Roman mythological characters, from major deities such as Athena and Bacchus, to the lesser-known wood nymphs and centaurs. Also included, of course, are the heroic mortals, figures such as Jason, Aeneas, Helen, Achilles, and Odysseus, all brought to life in a fascinating series of portraits drawn from a wide variety of ancient literary sources. Each entry offers a small window into a timeless mythological world, one filled with epic battles, bizarre metamorphoses, and all sorts of hideous and fantastic monsters. The perfect book for casual browsers and folklore enthusiasts alike, Who’s Who in Classical Mythology offers a rich and readable guide to some of the greatest stories ever told. Share article facebook twitter google pinterest If you have any comments on this article please contact us or get in touch via social media.